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 V.13 No.15 | April 8 - 14, 2004 

BOB: Community Picks

Martin J. Chavez--Mayor

There's a lot to like about Albuquerque, from our fabulous weather and scenic vistas to our friendly, multicultural atmosphere and terrific cuisine. From our visual and performance arts communities to our historic and contemporary neighborhoods, our recreational opportunities and special events, Albuquerque is truly unique and I am always proud to be part of it. One area where I have been getting a lot of positive feedback lately, in the Biopark: our Rio Grande Zoo, Botanic Gardens and Aquarium. I went with my family last weekend, and the facilities continue to be clean, user-friendly and fascinating. This is a great set of amenities with a lot of new attractions, so it's no wonder the Biopark is the state's number one attraction.

Also drawing big crowds and great feedback are Explora and the new Isotopes Stadium. In fact, baseball was such a great experience last season that record crowds just kept outdoing themselves as the season progressed, and at this rate we will retire the bonds we used to finance the beautiful renovation in record time.

Explora, meanwhile, enchants young and old alike with its wonderful array of hands-on exhibits and interactive displays. Because of its great location in Historic Old Town's museum district, the whole area is a great destination.

As a child of the '60s, if you will, I love a wide variety of music, and Albuquerque has a great year-round local music scene, highlighted by Summerfest. We are also increasingly attracting great national acts. In the last year, I've taken in shows at the Journal Pavilion, Outpost, the Kiva and many others. The recent Neil Young/Crazy Horse concert was my favorite, by a nose.

If there's a bad meal to be had in Albuquerque, I haven't found it lately. To name just a few choice establishments, breakfast might find me at Mac's La Sierra on the Westside, or at the Frontier or a Flying Star. For lunch, I might enjoy Marisco's or any one of the great restaurants Downtown. For dinner, Margaret and I love the Artichoke Café and Yanni's on Nob Hill.

In many ways, the Best of Albuquerque is also still ahead of us. We have so much potential that we are just now beginning to realize. Our Downtown revitalization has set a national turn-around standard, even as it is still under way (just wait until we've got a 10,000 seat Downtown arena to host a whole new level of events!).

This Summer's “best” will include another July 4 Extravaganza at the Balloon Park, and we will soon begin a year-long celebration of three centuries as a city. I'm sure many Alibi readers this summer will also be enjoying such best-of attractions throughout our special city.

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